On May 4, 2016, the Duke of Kent will officially open new sports and play facilities at King George’s Field in Barford. The field is to be overseen by the recently formed Barford Sports Club.
The opening of these facilities will coincide with the 79th anniversary of his grandfather, King George’s coronation, and the Queen’s 90th birthday.
In January of 2014, a working group of volunteers was established to examine ways to raise funds to build a new children’s play area and a multi-purpose games area. Since then, they’ve contributed more than 2,500 hours and raised almost £500,000, more than enough time and money to make this project a reality. A third of the funds were raised by members of the Barford, Sherbourne and Wasperton communities. The remaining two thirds came from several grants from organisations such as Sport England, Barford Community Charity, Barford, Sherbourne and Wasperton Joint Parish Council, Barford St. Peter’s School Trust, and Barford WI.
Construction began in September of last year. The workers didn’t allow wet weather to slow them down. It is projected that the project will be complete by the date of the official opening will begin at 11:30 am with a visit to Barford village Community Shops. A lunch will be held for special guests and dignitaries.
Mark Griffin, the leader of the working group expressed his pride in the community, the new facilities and the Duke’s visit by saying: “Everyone who has invested time on this project is immensely proud and incredibly honoured HRH The Duke of Kent has agreed to open the refurbished King George’s Field.
“It’s very pleasing he will be visiting our community shop, which through Barford Community Charity, has contributed more than £60,000 and helped us start our fund-raising journey. We are all very excited about the visit and can’t wait for the facilities to be open and available for everyone. They will be an outstanding asset providing people with somewhere to participate in a wide range of sports.”
There is a celebration day that will take place at the fields before the official re-opening. On Sunday, May, May 1st from noon until 6 pm. This day is for the community to share in the success of the project. Members are invited to bring a picnic to share and everyone is invited to participate in a range of games and activities that will be available.
Mr. Griffin said about this celebration day: “The community has provided substantial support to this project for the last two years, and this is a chance to thank people for their hard work helping get us to where we are today.”
Finally, to mark the completion of the project, all children under the age of 16 who live in the villages of Barford, Sherbourne and Wasperton as well as every student at St. Peter’s Primary School will receive a King George’s Commemorative Medal.
If you’d like to learn more about the playing fields, visit, www.barfordplayingfields.org